Author Notes: (For my loyal readers.)This IS Chapter four. I know. Yay. BUT after a few more chaps, they won't be so long anymore, in fact, they will be shorter than the others until Rukia has her baby. You know, I figured that I could grasp the whole pregnancy thing more by just presenting little ficlets/ or episodes (which will take you guys through their start of parenthood.) As everyone knows pregnancy is so broad and has many different levels, moods, expressions, morals and all that. I can present better chaps that way until our Rukia has the baby! Remember this is all fluff, funny and heartwarming so please tell me what you think.
Ps… most episodes will link together. They are JUST like actually chappies so please don't skip. (I mean you could but why?)
Ch 4 – My Dear Rukia, Have You Gotten Fat?
Rukia glared at her boyfriend as he hesitated to knock on the door. "Seriously? How come it takes twenty years before you do anything, huh?"
"It's not that." Ichigo mumbled calmly. His cautions were out of fear. Sure he had talks with father, back and forth. And Rukia had her share with befriending Yuzu but— other than that, this would be the closest he had ever been to his family. The small childhood figures of his two younger siblings still stained his mind, he knew then that it was too long. By now, Rukia seemed to understand the whole concept and finally shut up about it. She realized that her time was drawing close to meeting with her family and all she had was one to bond with— versus the many Ichigo had to deal with. Plus them being all crazy and such.
He took a deep breath and proceeded to knock on the door. Abruptly, the door swung open, inducing the couple to freeze in a helpless act to protect themselves from what was coming. A little boy with dark eyes and short coffee black hair was standing there.
"WOW…" little child beamed as the couple peered down in immense confusion, "It really IS orange hair…" the boy noted as he walked back into Ichigo's home, leaving the door disrespectfully open for them to close. The frightened Ichigo had only been able to make out his pajamas, covered in Tasmanian devil prints. His little feet, the orange-haired man noticed, were also covered in bold Tasmanian devil slippers. Several seconds later, they heard the little boy screech, "Moooooooooooooooooooooooooom! They are here!"
MOM? The hell? Were they at the right house? Then Ichigo thought, this was the only clinic on the street that had a house attached to it. There couldn't be no other one.
"Well he's cute…" Rukia giggled. "…neighbor kids?" She figured since the Kurosaki sisters never had kids.
"I guess so…" Yuzu did often babysit the kids next door but that was so long ago. He couldn't even remember what the kids looked like. Surely they had grown up and were off to high schools now. The two of them stepped in the warm house, took off their shoes, and awkwardly closed the door. Ichigo took one step and it felt like a sharp knife went through his foot. "Ow! Shit!" It was damn action figure. Aqua man— Thor or some shit. Whatever it was, it felt like murder to his foot— almost worse than a Lego.
"You okay? Watch where you're going, huh…" Rukia rolled her eyes.
Ichigo picked up the toy, noticing the whole place was covered in toys. "What are these made with anyway? Kryptonite?" The humbled home seemed inaudible… and that was weird in itself. However, even after the mystery boy announced his arrival aloud, no one seemed to come out and greet him.
"DAAAAAADDDDDDDDYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYY!" a cheerful voice rang out, and before Ichigo could process what was happening, there was another small dark blur of movement and a blob of green was attached to Ichigo's feet. The thing jumped up and kissed his cheeks, all over his pale white face, squealing enthusiastically and grasping to him like a life-line.
Ichigo blinked— then twice.
"Dad-dy?" Rukia raised a brow. Yea… and Ichigo was pretty freaking close to turning around and hightailing the hell out of there.
Yuzu laughed, grabbing the thing by its sides and pulling it away from her brother. Which Ichigo was sure to call it rescuing. "Hey, Toji—stop it! No attacking the guests…"
"Why does he think I'm—" Ichigo began to ask out softly, only for the thing to let out a high-pitched whine, blinking big, green eyes at him cutely and sticking his lower lip out. It was another little boy with jet black hair with not gray but pure white/ sliver streaks. "Why does he think I'm his father?" Ichigo finally asked with help of the small silence before the varmint started again.
"He always calls everyone his daddy." Yuzu rolled her eyes laughing again, noticing the chocolate stains Toji left on Ichigo's coat. "Hey Ichigo— Rukia." She smiled calmly, "Nice to see you guys." She was grown up now… in her late twenties with long brown hair and a little on the chubby side. Yet, the woman was cheery. That never changed about her.
"Hey Yuzu…" Rukia finally stepped from behind Ichigo and hugged her. "It's been awhile."
"DADDY, DADDY, DADDY!" Toji beamed again, lurching toward Ichigo again.
"TOJI!" Yuzu pulled the boy back, sternly this time, "Everyone can't be your daddy… you only have one daddy." Toji frowned, "What's the matter? You aren't happy with one daddy?"
"Blahhh! I want lots of daddies— MILLION OF DADDIES!" the boy growled in his bright blue Scooby doo onesie, reenacting a T-Rex. "RAWRRRR!" Rukia and Yuzu proceeded to laugh. Ichigo was still quite confused. How could he let himself be gone from this family so long?
"Stop— stop…" Yuzu shook her head at Rukia, "Watch this…" she stooped down and stared sternly at the little boy, "Now Mister Toji Hitsugaya…"
The little dark haired boy stood there straight like a solider, wondering if he had said something wrong to make his auntie snap so seriously, "Yes Aunnie Zuzu." He hated when he was called by his first name, Mister. Perhaps because they always said when he was in trouble.
"What did we say about having too many daddies?"
Toji pouted staring down at the wooden floor, "Be happy with what you have or how many you have… cus you'll never know what you had till it's gone…" he sighed as she urged him to continue, "And… having many daddies would be fine, If only mommy had enough wine…" Toji rolled his eyes, as 'Aunnie Zuzu' and mommy has stressed that many times.
Rukia laughed again. How cute? Seriously she was amazed, "How do you do that?" She asked as the boy walked into the kitchen, "He's like your own personal quote book."
Yuzu smiled, "I didn't teach him that. Karin did." She proceeded to help with their coats, placing them in the guest closet. "She teaches both of her boys stuff like that all the time.
Suddenly the other boy came covered in the same chocolate, licking his fingers and staring up at Ichigo's orange hair. "This is Michael. Karin's other baby boy." Yuzu smiled again, "He's smart like his daddy if you ask me."
Michael beamed a big grin, feeling proud with chocolate on his face. He was... adorable, if not for the chocolate.
"Hey, you know you're pretty dirty…" Yuzu noticed with amusement. "Been eating again? You're going to get really chubby, Michael!"
"Am nooot!" the boy wailed. "MOMMMMM, Auntie Zu is BEING MEAN AGAIN!"
From somewhere deep within the warm house, a medium, half teasing voice called back. "Well, tell Auntie Zu that if she doesn't get her sweet caboose over here to help with this stupid bean casserole she talked me into making, I'm gonna bake her in it!" She added a heavy HUMPH. Ichigo was still slightly confused about Karin's threat. Karin was a lot meaner than that. Sweet caboose? What? Yet, Yuzu reacted.
"Oops…" Yuzu giggled, "Okay, don't forget to take the steak out— I'll be right there… I had to uh… Show Rukia to my room so she could change!" Before Ichigo even knew what was happening, Yuzu grabbed the midget and off they went, Rukia pissin and moaning about why she had to change all the sudden. And now, with both ladies gone, he was left with the waist-high dark haired thing that seemed to be one of his new nephews.
And of all things to say at a time like this, the dark eyed boy peered up at the skyscraper, cheeks rosy and chocolate painted lips parted slightly in wonder. "So… is that a wig …or what?" He asked in his tinny, preschool-school voice.
Ichigo, already slightly irritated by the fact this little boy was related to him, regarded him with a quiet, sullen expression that should have rejected any belief that he was wearing a fucking wig. Michael must not have caught the look because he stared deeper at his uncle's spiky orange hair, "Can I see it? I wanna wear it…"
"No." Ichigo hissed, hoping to the heavens that all kids weren't like this, especially his…
"Because…" Ichigo growled, "It's not a wig… it's my real hair— see?" he pulled a hand full of his hair from his tender head.
"Nah I don't believe it." The boy snickered. Almost like Karin when she would tease Ichigo when they were younger. "It could be glued on…"
His eyebrow twitched slightly, "It is not glued on." Ichigo said more sternly. Why did it have to be a wig of all things a child could come up with? Could he have just ask if it was his real hair color?
"Why?" okay now the kid was just being annoying.
Ichigo frowned. "…Because it's not a…" he paused for just a second, partially grinning from a scheme he quickly thought up, "Tell you what. Maybe it is a wig… I'll let you wear it if you let me wear your face…"
Little Michael's eyes widened, "but… but, you can't wear my face…"
"Betcha, I can…" Ichigo's disembodied face and spooky voice alone would have creeped out the boy but he wanted to take things up to the next level. A weird ability he had been able to do as a young child— he simply pulled the skin from around his jaw and stretched it at least an inch or two. If the boy had been any clever to stay he would realize that Uncle Ichigo couldn't really pull off his skin. But Michael didn't wait for that. He literately turned white as a ghost and fled straight to his mother.
"MOOOOOMMMMMMMMMM UNCLE ICHIGO IS SCARYING ME!"
Then it wasn't until Karin's voice traveled back to the living room again, "WELL, TELL UNCLE ICHIGO THAT HE'S DEFINITELY GETTING BAKED ALONG WITH THIS CASSEROLE!"
"HEY, the hell did I do!" Ichigo whined, darting into the kitchen where his nephew had gone, "I just got here!"
Once he entered the kitchen, both boys were talking to a young woman standing by the stove who brandished a wooden spoon as she yapped away at them. Her black hair was long, tied back into a braid—it was beginning to frizz, no doubt from the heat—and her gray eyes were narrowed into a little glare, but at the same time they were very sincere, loving. That couldn't be Karin. Unlike Yuzu, Ichigo could see that Karin stayed thin— supermodel thin. And she was so pretty— she was always pretty— yet when she was younger, she hid behind her boyish hobbies. But now, there was not a tomboyish feature present.
"Mommy, Mommy, Mommy! Look there he is! Uncle Ichigo is a big skin monster and he wants to eat my face!" Michael blinked, clutching on to her pant leg.
Very suddenly, he was the target of that slight glare, the already annoyed Karin regarded her brother skeptically before she got a really good look at him. But when she did, those grey eyes rolled good-naturedly, unamused. "Him?" she shook her head, "Ichigo wouldn't hurt a measly fly how much less you two…"
"So he's not gonna eat us?" Toji asked worriedly.
"Because he has saggy skin and can stretch it all the way to Africa? Pleeeease. I don't think so." She chuckled, "He's about as dopey as a doughnut."
"Wha…?" Ichigo raised a brow. "That's not true. My skin is very healthy and I'd appreciate it if you didn't—"
"What? Remind you that your chronically age is over ninety? I don't care what you say, stretching your skin is not normal. And it definitely wasn't normal at five." She turned to her boys, "Don't let him scare you with that trick. That's how he scared your aunt and I…" She laughed again, "Now go run along. Clean up the living room. I know it's a mess and if I know your uncle dopey as well as I do, he probably stepped on one of your toys and broke them…"
Ichigo frowned watching the boys flee out the door, there was a steady throbbing behind his left eye, not to mention the continuous ticking beneath his right one. "And I'm not finished with you yet…" Suddenly Ichigo had a creeping suspicion he was going to be the victim of Twenty Questions tonight. Karin finally put her down her concoction she was making. Very quickly a hand went up and slapped him on the cheek.
"OW! WHAT THE! WHAT WAS THAT FOR?" the man yelped out in pain as the side of his face pulsed and stung.
"That's for finally showing your face after all these years! Give me one good reason I shouldn't slap you again." Her hands were on her hips, eyes trying to read her brother's expression but there was nothing. Ichigo seemed to have absolutely no emotion but Karin knew better than that. If she knew him like she did, no expression meant he was feeling guilty. "Can't drop by or call? Hell even write a letter… anything is better than flat out ignoring your family."
"I didn't ignore you all…" Ichigo grimaced before she interrupted again.
"Well you certainly weren't talking to us… and before you say it. Don't say sorry. Just know you have missed a bunch." she carried on, "I'm married with twins. Don't you think I wanted you to know that? Perhaps invite you to my wedding. Michael and Toji always wanted to know who their uncle was. Also the clinic is being renovated. I moved out, Yuzu moved out and oh yes… Dad married his receptionist, Nanao."
"Dad got remarried?" Ichigo seemed so confused.
"Yes… November will be their two year anniversary. Mine will be four years in December." She explained, "All we want is for you to drop in every once in a while and not wait ten years to do it. We hang with dad every Wednesday— you know, to let the kids roam about. You showing up wouldn't hurt either, Jerk." She turned around, attending to the steak Yuzu reminded her to take out. Speaking of Yuzu, she turned around the corner, realizing that their talk was over. She could see the giant hand print on her brother's face from Karin's aggravation. She said she was gonna do it.
"Did… ya… take out the?" Yuzu asked in a small mousy voice.
"Yes Yuzu. I took out the stupid steak." Karin hissed, "Now help me with this damn casserole."
"Oh! Right, sorry!"
"So…" Karin started again, "Rukia is pregnant, huh Ichigo?"
Eventually that realization brought him back to the test results. "Yea… she really is." is really all he could say.
"…Everyone is getting preggers except me." Yuzu pouted.
"Well have you told Chad that you wanted kids?" Karin questioned, clutching her spoon with both hands, a curious – confused expression crossing her face as she realized that Chad had been together longer than she was with her husband— and still the couple was not married nor engaged.
"Yes!" Yuzu pouted again.
"Well what did he say?" Karin urged, grabbing a brown ceramic bowl on the counter that had a bit of chocolate frosting smeared over the rim— the same bowl her boys got into and helped herself to a taste.
"It's always the same." Yuzu's demeanor changed, mocking her boyfriend's personality perfectly— bored and quietly bland, "After I ask he says, Hmm. What heck is hmm?"
"How many weeks is Rukia?" Karin went back to the distant Ichigo. He stood by the door quietly listening to their chitchat.
"Almost fourteen weeks…" he murmured.
Karin blinked twice. "Boy that sure did creep on ya, huh?" both ladies laughed.
Abruptly doorbell rung snapping the cheery atmosphere back to reality. "Ichigo can you get that?" Yuzu begged, "I would but we have to finish dinner before everyone gets here."
With a huff, the man stood up right and walked to the door, making sure to not step on any of the twins' toys. But when he failed to do just that, his frowned deepened and headed faster to the door and whipped it open. Ichigo quickly wiped that pissed look off his face. It was Byakuya in the flesh and he brought a guest. Renji— Rukia's stepbrother. Ah hell.
"Ichigo Kurosaki." The tall slender man acknowledged, staring at Ichigo like the lowlife he appeared to be.
"Heh… Hi Mr. Kuchiki— Renji…" Ichigo tried to smile as he helped the new guest in. Byakuya must have had some kind of stern aurora about him because the Karin's kids pushed the toys out of the way and sat on the other end of the living, never uttering a word. The whole room was quiet until the weirdest noise came about.
"NO DAMN IT TO HELL!"
"Was that Rukia?" Byakuya wondered, unpleasantly confused at why she would spew such profanity in his presence.
Of course it was Rukia's voice that pierced the tense atmosphere and at the same time, Karin walks out of the kitchen. "The hell was that?" but she stopped and blinked, noticing the two new guests there with their brows raised. It was apparent that they wondered the same. "Heh, oops… I'm sorry. We didn't even here you come in…" Karin flushed, "Ichigo, what's Rukia doing?" she partially smiled.
"One sec…" What an impression… he thought.
The night was just getting started. It was smart to prepare herself— she had to look nice…
"Grr…" Rukia grumbled.
Rukia hadn't noticed before, but she couldn't fit into Yuzu's clothes anymore. Now how did she figure that so quickly, even though she hadn't seen Yuzu in years? Simple, a handful of Yuzu's clothes were her hand-me-downs. Oh yes— from dresses, skinny jeans, tanks and tees— all of it— every last bit were small and annoyingly tight. Yuzu said that these were clothes she couldn't fit anymore either and the woman just assumed that Rukia could still fit them since she was the one who gave her most of the outfits. But shit, Rukia couldn't fit them either.
She stood in the body mirror, eyeing her bumpless belly and thanking the heavens that her belly wouldn't be the first indication of her pregnancy. She still had her body somehow. Of course the occasional pudge she had was normal. The pooch she had when she was full or bloated.
However she looked normal but if anyone paid close penetrating attention, they would definitely see that she was slightly larger. Everywhere from her thighs up to her arms, even her face was somewhat big… Rukia stood there glaring into the mirror a little more, noticing her hips, frowning that she could now grab at them. "Damn it…" she cooed turning around, gazing at her back, realizing how curvy it was prior to a few months ago. Heh, and yet, the whole time she was standing there, she thought about how she was going to molest Yuzu's mean steak dinner and Karin's bean casserole tonight.
She sighed, finally finding more motivation to dig through Yuzu's collection. If there was ever a time she could make up excuses for ditching the formal wear for the 'oh so sexy sweat pants', this would be it— make no mistake. Nevertheless, she knew well she couldn't do that now. Byakuya, her brother, was joining them for dinner and, Yuzu insisted on her wearing something decent since they weren't allowed to go home. Isshin knew if they did that, they wouldn't come back that's for damn sure. Of course then, Rukia's eyes crossed a beige dress. It was an outfit she remembered giving Yuzu a year through mail. Oh it was so beautiful— short and silky with a pearl belt that stayed attached so all you had to do was fasten it in the middle. She gave it to Yuzu because Ichigo got her something better along those lines. But hell… there was no harm in trying to fit it. If she could, she be grateful.
Rukia slipped one midget leg in and then the other, slithered around until it stopped at her hips and then hopped around until she heard it.
"Damn it to hell…" But she had to wear this dress! It was the only article of clothing nice enough to fit halfway! "Surely I haven't…" she trailed off, "…gained…" She pulled the poor dress higher, "THAT…" huff, huff, "M-MUCH!" She tugged harder until she heard another rip. "NO, NO, NO!"
"You alright? Rukia?" Ichigo barely had time to talk to Karin, who was pissed at him for away for so long. The man knocked, "Hey… Rukia… Rukia? You okay in… your br—" Yuzu's door sprung open with much frustration.
"WHAT HUH? CAN'T YA SEE I'M BUSY!" the midget glowered at the confused male. "WELL?"
Ichigo blinked three times at the woman, "I'm sorry… We just heard you from the living room… your bro—"
"NO. GET OUT. GO AWAY. HASTA LA VISTA."
"Rukia." Ichigo uttered, "…calm—" his girlfriend slammed the door, just as the words slipped out of his mouth, "the fuck down…"
The door sprung open again, "NO I will not calm down…" her face scrunched up like a five year old, "All I wanted was just to fit into a size two… is that too much to ask?," she whined.
"Seriously?" The man blinked again, "If you just needed help, why didn't you ask me?"
"Come here." He whirled her around, straightening the back of her partial torn dress. "All it needs, is to be zipped is all." But when he found the zipper, it wouldn't zip up at all. Rukia's back was too wide.
"What's the matter?" Rukia sniffed, "Did you do it? Is it zipping?"
"Just a sec," Ichigo grunted in aggravation, avoiding to face the fact that something was indeed wrong here. He pulled and he tugged over and over again, inducing her to meet face to face with the wall. His foot dug into her back as if he was trying to tie a corset.
"ICHIGO YOU'RE HURTING ME!"
"OOOOOOOWWW!" she contorted, sobbing in pain.
His hands couldn't stand it. They eventually tensed up and he had to let go, sending Rukia, head first, into the wall. He didn't get it. Rukia never had trouble getting into clothes. Rarely did she even need his help. He watched his girlfriend pout and throw up her small hands in defeat. "I'm so done!" she grimaced. "Gonna find me some sweat pants— don't care what anyone says…" nothing could change her mind. She wasn't gonna sit there at dinner in something she wasn't comfortable in. She would rather wear pajama pants than to forcedly fit a corset dress! Fuck it, it just wasn't going to happen! No one would tell her otherwise!
"Err, sweatpants?" the orange haired male raised a brow, "Eh Rukia? Have you gotten bigger?"
Rukia's face slowly turned around till veins popped through her clammy neck, "Excuse me? What did you say?" her eyes were bright devilish violet. She was ready to pounce, I'll kill you with every ounce of anger I have instilled in me. Go on— say it bastard. She faced him with the glare of hell flames and thousand burning souls.
"Err… I mean— have you gotten a bigger butt?" he smiled, "Looks great in that dress— ripped dress… Heh, on second thought, sweat pants are all right… hehe…" the poor man backed away slowly, "Bye babe."
"She's okay." Ichigo fake smiled. "She changing her clothes. She'll be right out."
"Well she seemed angry…" Byakuya pointed out.
"Yeah very stressful day at the doctors…" crap why did he bring that up? "Long wait and stuff…" he lied.
"Well dinner is almost ready… make yourself comfortable." Karin disappeared back into the kitchen. Damn she sounded almost like Yuzu— it was pretty unnaturally scary.
"Is she well?" Rukia's brother urged again with an annoying bored tone Ichigo just couldn't shake off without looking some type of mad.
The orange haired man sighed. "Very…"
"OKAY. I'm done. If you don't like it? Too bad Ichigo because this is as good as it's gonna get." Rukia walked out in a hot sexy pink sweatpants, a Yo! Wat up Tokyo souvenir hoodie, and furry purple toe socks. "Yup, sexy and I know it… but too lazy to show it…" she suddenly choked on her yawn. "BROTHER!" her eyes averted to the figure standing next to him, "RENJI?" and she was in NO, NO, NO! Renji happened to laugh.
Her brother stood there with his mouth partially open. That never happened.
"Rukia, you are so loud." Yuzu came out of the kitchen. "…What on earth?"
"Hmm…" Byakuya could have said anything but instead he paused, one slender cuffed hand resting under his chin, deeply trying to figure out what hell his little sister was wearing. Finally his eyes got wide as his brows knitted together in curiosity, "My dear Rukia… have you gotten fat?"
Of course to be continued. Lol.